Improvements in technology provoke new ways to prevent distractions

Mara Gee, Editor-in-Chief

Having to deal with technology as a distraction in classrooms has become somewhat of a recent issue for teachers.

Cindy Nitschke, U.S. history teacher, has noticed a growing problem in the “last seven years,” she said.

Nitschke chooses to handle the phone epidemic the same way most teachers do – put away at all times unless instructed to use it – but with some extra parameters.

If it’s out repeatedly during the hour, Nitschke will put it in a box for her students to pick up by the end of class. Should she receive objections from the student, the phone will go to the office and the student has to pick it up from an assistant principal.

Nitschke also requires phones to be put in the box when students leave to use the restroom. She does this to prevent students from texting each other to meet outside of the classroom, she said.

“I have [outlets] around the room” and encourage students to use them, Nitschke said, as a way to keep them from being a distraction.

Laurie Plankers, English teacher, hasn’t noticed much of a problem with phones.

“I wasn’t so strict at the beginning of the year, so by January [phones] became a problem,” she said. Plankers decided that “[phones] should be put away unless directed otherwise,” she said.

“We definitely need to figure out a way to get students to put away [their phones],” Helen Hardgree, Quest teacher, said.